The Old Town (Stare Miasto) and New Town (Nowe Miasto) are the two oldest parts of Warsaw. Administratively, they are neighbourhoods in the district of Śródmieście. The Old Town is comparatively small to the old towns of many other European cities, as during the time of its development Warsaw was a small town of mostly local importance and not yet the capital of Poland. The New Town is called so because it was the first part of Warsaw to be built outside of the original city wall ring, but it is indeed not much newer than the old town and much older than most of other neighbourhoods of Warsaw.
Both the Old and New Town were almost completely destroyed during the Second World War, and were reconstructed after the war. While, due to the meticulous and painstaking efforts, the impression one gets is that of authentic historic places, it is a 20th-century reinterpretation of the history of this area, and is actually a mixture of buildings that existed in different periods, and in many cases a rather creative faux. Warsaw’s Old and New Towns are charming, compact and very walkable. It is hardly apparent when you walk around today that the buildings around you are little more than 60, rather than 600, years old.
The Old and New Town are in Śródmieście, so arriving from there is not a problem by public transit or on foot. You can also arrive from Praga across the river by bus or tram. There are no train or Metro stations within or near the Old and New Town. To get there, you need to change to a different means of public transit.
Several buses stop at Plac Zamkowy, which is right in front of the eponymous Castle Square. For tourists, the most important ones would be the sightseeing line 180 going down the Royal Road to/from Wilanów, the 116 line which goes pretty much the same way, and the 175, going to the Chopin Airport (please note that the 175 only stops at Pl. Zamkowy on its way to the airport, it terminates farther away at Plac Piłsudskiego when coming from the airport).
The tram and bus stop right under the Plac Zamkowy (Castle Square) is called Stare Miasto. Trams serving this stop as 4, 13, 20, 23 and 26. All of them continue through a tunnel under the Old Town to Metro Ratusz/Arsenał, and over the Śląsko-Dąbrowski bridge to Dworzec Wileński in Praga. From the stop, the best way to get to the Plac Zamkowy is to take Warsaw’s oldest functioning escalator, which is located next to the tunnel entrance, on the side closer to the Royal Castle. A lift for those with limited mobility is provided there as well.
It is quite impractical to try to ride a bike to the Old Town due to the uneven road surfaces on the way, sketchy bike path network and the fact that it is forbidden to ride a bike in the Old and New Towns.
Walking from either Ratusz/Arsenał or Świętokrzyska Metro stations is also possible and the routes can be interesting and picturesque.
- 1 The Royal Castle (Zamek Krolewski), pl. Zamkowy 4 (In the Old Town), ☎+48 22 355 51 70, e-mail: email@example.com. Tu-Sa: 10AM – 4PM. Su: 11AM – 4PM. Adult: 30 zl; Students: 20 zl..
- 1 Pałac pod Blachą.
- 1 Old Town Market Square.
- 1 New Town Market Square.
- 1 The Barbican.
- 1 Multimedia Fountain Park.
- 1 Arkady Kubickiego.
- 1 Kamienne Schodki.
- 1 View over Vistula (Gnojna Góra).
- 1 Monument to Jan Kiliński.
- 1 Monument to the Polish People Murdered in the East (Pomnik Polaków Pomordowanych na Wschodzie), ul. Muranowska (near ul. Bonifraterska). “East” means “in the Soviet Union”.